How to Choose Colors to go with Designer Series Paper

How to Choose Colors to go with Designer Series Paper


If you have trouble choosing colors to go with Designer Series Paper Paper then you want to watch this video for a strategy to make that choice simpler. Hi this is Sage Kimble and I’m the Mad Stamper, with another design tip video for cardmakers and paper crafters. Designer Series Paper also known as DSP and other patterned papers can stump many paper crafters when they’re trying to find the right colors of card stocks to combine with a pretty designs. Stampin’ Up! now puts a list of coordinating colors on their DSP packaging so that has helped a lot. But that’s not much help if you don’t have the colors on the list or maybe have older Designer Series Paper that didn’t come with a list of coordinating colors. And even bigger problem comes when you’ve bought patterned paper from another source and you have to find some card stock to go with it. So you need a strategy for making these color choices and I thought I did share mine with you. First of all I encourage you to make a set color cards by cutting a 3 x 4.25” piece of card stock in each color that you have in your collection. These will help you make color choices more easily as you can hold them up to the Designer Series Paper and see which ones complement the colors in the design. Here’s an example of a piece of Sweet Sorbet paper from a past Sale-a-Bration catalog. I don’t have the list of colors so I can’t go by that. I’m going to have to match them to my cards. I’ll start with the blue color and compare my blues to the piece of designer paper. It is pretty light and a little turquoise-y, so I’m going to get rid of some of the none turquoise-y colors and start there. I’ll take a look at Coastal Cabana but that’s a little dark compared to this color. But Pool Party seems a little light, actually either of them would probably work pretty well. On this particular piece of Designer Series Paper I can turn it over and see the colors against white here they’re against… I really like green so it makes it harder to tell. But when I turn it over and hold the Pool Party up to the blue flowers, it looks like a pretty good match. But I’m also wondering if maybe Soft Sky isn’t what is going to match that really light blue. So I turn it back over and Soft Sky doesn’t look turquoise enough. Meaning it doesn’t have enough green in it. So the Pool Party is the closest match to the blue looking on this side. Then I need a color to go with this kind of coral color. So Calypso Coral is a pretty obvious choice but it looks kind of dark. Tangerine Tango is another orange with a little coral influence but that’s way too dark and bright. And then there’s Crisp Cantaloupe which actually looks pretty close, so once again I going to turn this over to where the color is against a white background. And I see that it really matches this coral color quite well. Now let’s look at this neutral color it looks kind of gray or really kind of a muddy brown. So let me get my neutrals out and first I want to look at gray because that was my first thought but when I hold Smoky Slate the light colored grey up next to it, I can see that there’s a lot more blue in this gray and this is a warmer color. It’s got a little more rosiness to it. So I’m going to go with the lightest brown that I have, Sahara Sand and that looks pretty good right there. I’ll turn it over and when I put it right next to this color against white, that looks like it matches pretty well. Let’s figure out what that green is and the only green that I have in this collection that is anywhere near light enough is Pistachio Pudding. So against this background it looks a little bit dark again I’m going to turn it over and hold it up against this green here and you can see that it matches quite well. The Whisper White is pretty obvious and then we need to look at the yellow. Here are my yellow choices and first I think it might be Crush Curry. Although it’s a little bright compared to what’s on the paper. And when I turn it over it doesn’t look anywhere near… it kind of a green yellow. And I remember Summer Starfruit which is actually a color I’m not at all fond of. But it is the one that matches this Designer Series Paper. Now if I were making a project with this and wanted a yellow that I do like, I would probably use Hello Honey, it’s close enough to the color on this side of the paper. And it’s a yellow that I can live with. So here is the palette of colors for this Designer Series Paper. Now you notice they’re all pretty much pastels. The Hello Honey is little brighter maybe but they’re all very light colors. So when you’re doing a project you could choose to go with one of the colors in a darker form. Like I could use Calypso Coral or Coastal Cabana. The color that you want to emphasize in this pattern is probably the one that you’re going to want to choose in a darker version. Now this Designer Series Paper has six colors in it including the white. So if you’re making a card that would be a lot of colors for canvas that small. So you need to choose two or three colors to use with it. Instead of all six, otherwise you’ll have trouble bringing all the colors into the design, without it feeling scattered. This Designer Series Paper is pretty easy to match the colors to because the colors are really very true to the colors of the card stock and the inks. Although on this side they’ve used lighter versions of some of the colors in places. What that suggests is that you have room to make choices. So just like I chose to use Hello Honey because I don’t like the Summer Starfruit that’s in this paper. Or like choosing to use a darker version of the Turquoise Blue in order to create a little more contrast. You have some leeway, even with a list of colors on the package you still have to look at the colors and compare them to your card stocks. You may have trouble matching the colors and papers from other sources as well. That’s why a set of these color cards is an important tool in your craft room. With all the colors in your collection in your hands you’ll be able see which colors go with the patterned papers and which ones don’t. Understanding the qualities of colors is an important skill for paper crafters. You make color choices every time you create. But do you know why you choose the colors you do? Do you know why one orange may clash with your pattern paper while another one may feel more harmonious? It all depends on the mix of colors that make up that orange. Once you learn to look at colors in terms of how they’re created, you’ll find making color choices much easier and more fun as well. You can learn to read colors in this way in the online class, Use Colors Like a Pro!! Color Theory Made Simple for Paper Crafters. Use the link under the video to get all the details. Now go make yourself a set of color cards so that you’ll have a tool for helping you choose colors to go with your patterned papers. For more inspiration and instruction be sure to visit me on my website at www.StampingMadly.com; the StampingMadly Facebook page and The MadStamper YouTube channel. Happy Stamping!

3 thoughts on “How to Choose Colors to go with Designer Series Paper

  1. Thanks so much for this very informative video. This was so helpful especially the turning the double sided paper over to look at the other side ……..why did I never think of this:-)
    One question I would add though Sage, once colours have been selected that match the paper, how on earth do you then decide how to put them together in a card?
    This is where all my efforts fall apart at the seams big time. Any and all help appreciated.

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